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A solicitor is taking me to court for £5000 of which I will…

A solicitor is taking...

A solicitor is taking me to court for £5000 of which I will is excessive

Lawyer's Assistant: Since laws vary from place to place, what state is this in?

United Kingdom

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?

They sent the matter to small claims court and are not responding to my emails

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Answered in 8 minutes by:
9/19/2017
Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 26,215
Experience: LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
Verified

Hello and thank you for your question. I will be very pleased to assist you. I'm a practising lawyer in England with over 10 years experience.

May I confirm is this for non payment of fees?

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If I can help any further with the above, please do come back to me. I'd be pleased to assist if I am able. All the best.

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
it is but fees are disputed

I'm so sorry for the delay in reverting to you. For some reason I was not notified of your reply. Do you still require any assistance with the above?

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
please

Thank you. Once again sincere apologies for my delay in reverting to you.

  1. From what you say you have received a court summons? If so on what date roughly?
  2. Have you made a formal complaint to the solicitors previously?
  3. If so didyou receive a formal response within 8 weeks to your complaint?
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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
I received the summons 4 weeks ago, I defended the claim. The courts have written suggesting mediation which I have agreed to.I have made a formal complaint but received no response

Thanks. You can consider asking the court to approve alternative dispute resolution via the Legal Ombudsman and to adjourn the claim pending the outcome of that complaint. The legal Ombudsman has statutory authority to determine complaints about solicitors and can make a determination in respect of your complaint. Courts are very keen on ADR for the obvious reason that it frees up their courts. If the court has already proposed some alternative mediation service and you have accepted the court may not allow any change to the agreed mediation at this stage.

Notwithstanding the above you can refer a complaint to the Legal Ombudsman within 8 weeks of making your formal complaint whether or not the solicitor has already responded. Providing the court agrees to adjourn the case for the LO to look at the matter then the claim will be frozen until a decision is returned from the Ombudsman. It is particulary bad form on the part of the solicitor to issue proceedings before even responding to your complaint. This is not likely to help their case with the Ombudsman though it only be one factor.

If you have already agreed to mediation and the court will not allow a request for ADR through the Legal Ombudsman at this stage you may have to work throgh mediation though you can then ask the court to agree to ADR through the Legal Ombudsman after mediation. As I am sure you know there is no charge to use the Legal Ombudsman and their decision is binding on the solicitor though not on you. If you are satiifed with their decision then you can pay any balance of fees agreed less any deductions the Ombudsman orders and notify the court of the settlement. If you are unhappy with the decision you can appeal it internally at the Ombudsman or decide to revert to court for the cout to decide the matter.

Does the above answer all your questions? If it does, I should be very grateful if you would kindly take a moment to click a rating for my service to you today. Your feedback is important to me. If there is anything else I can help with please reply back to me though

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
It does thank youHow do I ask the court now? Should I write to them requesting now or wait for response to mediation?What happens if her refuses mediationWhat happens if he agrees to mediationRealistically speaking... is the amount charged reasonable for the hours alleged?Can he volunteer to complete work then charge me for it?

Have you completed a pre hearing quesionnaire yet? This is a form that asks among other things if there are any dates you can't attend court and whether you'd be willing to consider mediation etc?

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
I have. I ended up sending it Saturday gone because it was due in by 29 and I hadn't had a response to the question
Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Not your fault but just answer took 3 payments form me costing nearly £80

I'm really sorry. You should have been notified of my original response, and me yours. Clearly something went wrong for which I am very sorry. On that basis as you have only just recently sent it it is unlikely to have been processed by the court yet. Even if it has, it makes no difference to your next move. You can write to or email the court and say that you write further to your returning the pre hearing questionnaire and that you would like to request an adjournment of the claim so you can refer the matter to the Legal Ombudsman Service for alternative dispute resolution. You can explain that you strated this process by complaining to the solicitors but they ignored your complaint and instead issued proceedings without notice. You can say that you are wish to avail yourself of your right to refer your complaint to the Ombudsman under the Legal Services Act 2007.

As I refer to above the courts are very ken on ADR and it is perfectly true that the Legal Services Act specifically established the LO in order to give consumers access to cost effective (free) means to hold solicitors to account. It does not look good that the solicitors have tried to shortcut that process by trying to deny yu your rights to the Ombudsman. Your application should be well received.

Re your queries, the solicitor can refuse mediation but he cannot refuse to deal with the Ombudsman if the court grants your request. The law says he must comply with the Ombudsmans instructions.

You will appreciate I cannot comment on whether the amount charged is fair on the information to hand but the Ombudsman is very good at determining such matters. Thats mainly what they do. The solicitor cannot charge you for work he agreed to carry out without charge.

I am very sorry to hear that you have been charged several time by JA. I trust you have received a refund for those charges. If not please let me know and I will ask customer services to contact you to arrange a refund.

Has the above answered your questions satisfactorily?

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
That is very helpful, I will email the courts now.Lastly, if solicitor agrees mediation will What we agree end as a CCJ?If he refuses mediation and we go to court will I end up with a CCJ?Many thanks for your help

I'm glad the above was of assistance. If he agrees to mediation or for that matter the court agrees to allow you to refer to the LO as above, then the case will be suspended until the outcome of the mediation / LO. If you can reach settlement then the court is notified and providing both parties adhere to the terms of settlement that is an end to the matter and the claim ends.

If mediation and/or the LO is refused or agreement cannot be reached it goes back to court for a hearing and a judgment. Providing you pay the judgment by the time stated in the judgment if you lose no CCJ will be recorded against your name.

Does the above answer all your questions or is there anything I can clarify or help you with any further?

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
I'm sorry this is the last questionWhen you say by the time stated in the judgement... how long can the courts give me to pay the money without having a judgement against me

No problem. The standard time is 30 days but a judge can award a longer period in some cases.

I hope the above was helpful. If you have no further questions for now I should be very grateful if you would kindly take a moment to click a rating to rate my service to you today. I am very grateful to receive any feedback.

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
How do I get a longer period. Will just asking suffice?

Its unlikely you would get more than the standard number of days. You can ask but judges will only typically grant in exceptional circumstances. Though of course we are jumping the gun here - you haven't lost yet!

Joshua
Joshua, Lawyer
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 26,215
Experience: LL.B (Hons), Higher Prof. Dip. Law & Practice
Verified
Joshua and 87 other UK Law Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Thank you for you help Joshua, I really do appreciate! I wish I could let you know the outcomeKind regardsK

Please do pop back and let me know if you would like to. I'd be very pleased to hear. The question should save to your account permanently.

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